Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes – A Surprisingly Healthy Upgrade to Shortcakes with Protein-Rich Ricotta and Reduced Fat.

Layered between two Buttery and Flaky Biscuits is Strawberry Basil Compote and Whipped Vanilla Ricotta offering a Soft and Refreshing Flavor you don’t want to miss!

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta | URBAN BAKES

Okay guys… I have to confess.

I did NOT share this dessert with anyone. Not a single soul and you know what? I’m gonna be a little selfish here because about 95% of the time, I always share. It could be friends, neighbors, coworkers, whoever is willing to take desserts off of my hands to free up my fridge and counter space. But not this time. And for a good reason.

I LOVE these strawberry basil shortcakes! I must admit, this is the first time making them so although I haven’t tried other variations of the biscuit portion, how much different could other shortcakes really be?

On second thought, I take that back.

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta | URBAN BAKES

I’m almost certain there are others that are more “moist and buttery” but heck, I’m proud to say for using only 1 tablespoon of sugar and 3 tablespoons of butter in the dough, as opposed to the standard 1/3 cup of each part – and in some recipes even more, these came out fantastic!

And just like that, this shortcake recipe is reduced-fat plus a good source of protein(1) with the use of part-skim ricotta instead of traditional heavy cream. By way of these two small adjustments, we’ve now incorporated more protein into the dessert with less fat and without sacrificing texture and flavor. That’s a win-win in my book!

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta | URBAN BAKES

As you can tell from the title, these strawberries don’t come by itself. One of its best flavor pairings is fresh basil. I’ve made a few desserts in my day using basil with fruits such as this almond tart and cobbler. So coming back to bring you another fruit and basil treat ought to tell you, this is good. Really good!

Fresh basil has a unique way of adding its own hint of sweetness to any dish from savory to sweet. Place basil on margherita pizza and this herb initially gives a peppery flavor with a minty note best known to cut the acidity of the tomatoes which ultimately leaves a subtle sweetness. In the same regard, this has a similar effect to strawberries which in the end, only adds more depth and character to the shortcakes.

Now let’s talk about this ricotta!

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta | URBAN BAKES

Holy goodness, this whipped vanilla-flavored ricotta is to die for! I’ve never would’ve thought of using ricotta cheese to replace whipped cream but I must say, this was the best decision and honestly, I think I may do this more often. Although ricotta doesn’t have the same buttery mouthfeel as heavy cream, it’s still creamy and very refreshing with fruit. To my surprise, this cheese is able to hold the vanilla better than whipped heavy cream which ultimately softened the overall flavor of the shortcakes.

Without a doubt, this is one refreshingly light dessert I could imagine being served after a meal or perhaps as a dainty tea-time treat. If you’re looking to lighten up your desserts by cutting fat and/or adding more protein, this recipe comes highly recommended. You will feel less guilty too!

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Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta | URBAN BAKES

Strawberry Basil Shortcakes with Whipped Ricotta

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  • Author: URBAN BAKES
  • Total Time: 1 1/2 hours
  • Yield: 6 1x


A Surprisingly Healthy Upgrade to Shortcakes with Protein-Rich Ricotta and Reduced Fat.

Layered between two Buttery and Flaky Biscuits is Strawberry Basil Compote and Whipped Vanilla Ricotta offering a Soft and Refreshing Flavor you don’t want to miss!




  • 1 1/2 cups (195 grams) fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced 1 mm thin
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) brown sugar
  • 2 sprigs (6 grams) fresh basil, chiffonade cut, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon (13 grams) granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (8 grams) baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) salt
  • 3 tablespoons (42 grams) unsalted cold butter, sliced or cut in 1 cm cubes
  • 3/4 cup (188 grams) buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon (15 grams) oat milk or regular milk
  • 1 teaspoon (4 grams) coarse sugar (demerara or turbinado)


  • 1 cup (248 grams) part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup (29 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (6 grams) pure vanilla extract



  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir sliced strawberries with brown sugar and 1 sprig of basil. Heat for 5 minutes until strawberries have softened. A few may break down completely.  Remove from heat and transfer compote to a shallow bowl to cool to room temperature. 
  2. Heat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat, parchment paper or lightly coat with cooking spray; set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Toss in butter and coat with flour mixture. Using a pastry blender or long-tined fork, cut in butter until the mixture becomes crumbly. Largest crumb should be no larger than the size of a small pea.  Stir in buttermilk until flour mixture is just moistened. Dough will be sticky.
  4. Transfer dough onto a lightly floured surface.  Knead 6 to 8 times until the dough is smooth in appearance.  Pat dough down to 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick.  Using a 2 1/2 inch (6 cm) round biscuit cutter, cut the dough into rounds.  Reroll scraps as needed to make 6 rounds.  Transfer onto the baking sheet. Brush coat the tops of each round with milk and sprinkle coarse sugar on top. 
  5. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until golden brown.  Remove from oven and allow the biscuits to rest for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
  6. In a deep bowl using an immersion blender, mix ricotta, powdered sugar and vanilla together until smooth. 
  7. Once biscuits have cooled, slice in half lengthwise.  To make shortcakes, dollop whipped ricotta onto the bottom half of each biscuit.  Layer with strawberry-basil compote and sprinkle remaining basil on top. Place the top half of each biscuit above to make a complete shortcake.  ENJOY!
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Cuisine: British

(1) Source: 9 Healthiest Types of Cheeses

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